Stephensons' win waste work

ENVIRONMENTAL law specialists at Stephenson Harwood have won a government contract to survey planning legislation affecting waste- burning power stations.

The firm's environmental law group, headed by partner David Cuckson, won a competitive tender to get the work from the Department of Trade and Industry's Energy Support Unit.

His team of four environmental law specialists have a brief to examine the difficulties in getting planning permission faced by the developers of waste-burning power plants, known as waste combustion installations.

He says the Government is concerned the building of these plants is being hindered by current planning laws.

Much of the work will involve detailed studies of recent planning inquiries and the final report will provide recommendations on how to guide future developers through the planning maze.

“We're delighted to get the work. This is quite an unusual project which will involve us sending out questionnaires to other firms to gauge their experiences with planning law,” says Cuckson.

A spokesman says the DTI decided to carry out the project because a number of applications have not been successful.